Image Credit: Giu Vicente on Unsplash
January 25, 2022
The impact of COVID-19 has caused everyone to rethink the global trends that businesses followed before 2020. Assessing the effects of technology on businesses has become more important now than ever.
Businesses are prioritising the use of technology to engage customers, offer workplace flexibility, and bring automation to their operations.
In this week’s Let’s Talk, we asked experts to share their predictions for the technology trends that will have the most significant impact on businesses this year, so they can prepare for the challenges that 2022 will bring, including ongoing supply chain issues, cybercrime, and, of course, the pandemic.
“As businesses navigate the new normal, the way we approach IT in 2022 will continue to adapt and evolve.
“Brands are realising that customer service interactions offer a golden opportunity to not only resolve customer problems but foster a delightful exchange that deepens relationships and loyalty. This year, companies will increasingly leverage customer service as a branding opportunity, which means rethinking bot deflection for even the simplest conversations, instead opting to exceed delight with a human touch.
“However, we will see more companies automate the mundane using Robotic Process Automation (RPA) so businesses can continue to run when employees are unable to gain access to infrastructure and as remote work continues to gain popularity.
“To elevate employee experience, companies should complete a “tech review”, showing who and where each employee is, their role in the organisation, what devices, tools, and apps they use, and what level of access they need. This will enable IT to provide a more secure, seamless, and frictionless experience for the end-user.”
“As companies increasingly embrace more flexible and hybrid work strategies, many are looking for the tools to manage how and where employees work across assets and markets. Companies are thinking about space very differently – they realise that the office needs to be a place that is engaging, collaborative and rich in technology to support a user’s experience.
“This month, WeWork launched Workplace by WeWork, a workplace management software which allows enterprise customers to utilise our proprietary technology across their portfolio.
“Leveraging the software that WeWork built to manage and analyse its own spaces all around the world, Workplace by WeWork provides a turnkey technology solution that enables companies and their employees to seamlessly embrace more hybrid and flexible work models via a system that enable a user or company to book a desk, book a conference room, and manage their account digitally.”
“Cybersecurity is set to have a big impact on businesses this year, as companies must adapt their security posture in line with how cybercriminals are altering their ways and increasing their sophistication.
“Ransomware attacks will continue to be a serious threat to Australian businesses; however, we believe these will become less targeted, with criminals instead launching targeted attacks on countries with poor cyber-capabilities or those that are not allies of the US.
“As a result, there will be less openly exposed stolen data to access, meaning we foresee more databases, internal communications and personal details stolen from local companies and traded on the black market this year.
“Businesses should also look out for more technically advanced scams, where cybercriminals produce more deep fake videos, use more voice synthesis and further customise text and images to trick their victims.
“For crypto-related businesses, in particular, there’s likely to be a significant wave of attacks on the sector as it continues to grow. These will range from direct attacks on employees to software exploits and even fake suppliers to mass attacks via supply-chain software. We recently discovered a serious attack campaign on crypto startups that is currently active, so crypto businesses should be on high alert.”
“While the concept of Artificial Intelligence (AI) isn’t new, to date, it hasn’t played a significant role in our personal or professional lives. This will change in 2022, with AI set to become mainstream.
“We’ll see more businesses leveraging AI-driven data analysis to better understand and predict user behaviour, and AI-driven automation will change how businesses manage customer service, logistics and other areas where automation increases business efficiency.
“Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are other technologies set to make a significant impact on business in 2022, with the metaverse becoming increasingly popular. Covid-19 has presented opportunities for AR and VR to improve communication, collaboration, and productivity in this new hybrid and remote work era.
“Finally, a less exciting trend but a critical one for businesses to consider is their increased vulnerability to cyber-attacks, including the advent of email bombing. To combat this risk, businesses should look to enhance their privacy protection and data security technologies to ensure their business data and employee and customer privacy is protected.”
“Moving into 2022, many businesses are still under pressure due to the impact of Covid 19 on global supply chains and are still struggling to keep up with demand. Whether it be the movement of containers from ports, air freight, or even the transport of goods on the ground, there has been a drastic decline in services. Implementing these two trends will have a big impact on businesses.
“Perhaps the most important value created with the right shipment visibility solution is the ability to be agile. These applications start by providing geolocation of your shipment while in transit and builds-up to give your business a better understanding of the predicted ETA by layering in historical and other impact data, which helps your business understand whether an early or late shipment matters based on your inventory levels or demand. Once businesses know the business impacts of each delayed shipment, they can evaluate corrective measures and take action all from one place.
“The use of big data is a pillar of logistics 4.0, and this fusion will enable forecasts to be made about customer needs and preferences, as well as market trends. For example, blockchain is increasingly being used for full visibility and accountability for ethical and sustainable sourcing.
“Additionally, the use of big data in the industry will reduce the risk of shortages in warehouses through better allocation of resources, while improving overall customer service in the long term.”
“Staying competitive in today’s digital landscape means staying alert to current technology trends. A tech trend that will significantly benefit businesses this year is the widespread adoption of AI. By leveraging AI capabilities to power features like personalisation and recommendations, businesses can use data-driven insights to outperform competitors.
“Across many industries, there’s also an increasing trend towards automated solutions. Automated solutions are a great way for businesses to streamline repetitive activities and use resources more effectively with the ongoing tech talent shortage.
“In 2022, businesses will continue to leverage digital experience platforms (DXP), to optimise content and better serve customers across every step of the digital experience. As more customers turn online than ever before, DXP is key to providing personalised experiences at every touchpoint.”
“We’ve seen how successful Australians have shifted to working from home, so employers must pay close attention to how their employees’ expectations have changed since then.
“Australian businesses already have to contend with chronic skills shortages before the pandemic, so if they want to hang on and attract highly-skilled workers, they’ll need to centre digital-first experiences and workplace flexibility as their recruitment strategy.
“Australian businesses won’t be able to do this until they truly embrace digital transformation, which goes beyond a one-off investment in a collaboration tool. Technology that enables automation will be key to embracing the digital future of work, empowering business teams to be self-reliant whether in the office, at home, or anywhere else in the world.
“CIOs must take responsibility for driving this mindset and encouraging both IT and business teams alike to unlock and integrate their data sets if they want to take advantage of their own digital transformation efforts.”
“The pandemic disrupted traditional ways of life in 2021. Remote learning and working became the norm of many, telehealth took off, and IT modernisation accelerated in every industry.
“COVID upended expected business trajectories and exposed weaknesses in machine learning systems dependent on historical data and reasonably predictable systems. This identified an acute need to bolster investments in traditional analytics teams and techniques for rapid data discovery, hypothesising and scenarios planning.
“Therefore, synthetic data generation will play a major role in helping businesses respond to continued dynamic markets and uncertainty this year, across all industries. Retailers that succeed in 2022’s new normal will use analytics to capture and read supply-chain information and consumer-demand signals, then rapidly respond to supply-chain glitches and changing customer preferences.
“Similarly, analytics will drive supply chain transformation as organisations strike a balance between continuity and survival on the one hand and risk management and fighting fraud on the other.
“Additionally, in 2022, AI and automated decisions in marketing will become even more essential in transforming responsive customer engagements into anticipatory ones.”
“As businesses continue the trend of leveraging cloud-based services for more and more of their critical functions, this shift into a “cloud-first” world will be one of the largest impacts on organisations into 2022. It also means the cybersecurity threats that come along with deploying and managing cloud-based services and applications will continue to be a major trend that impacts businesses throughout 2022.
“It is imperative that organisations help build proper expertise within their IT and security teams around managing cloud services and not treat it as being exactly like a traditional data centre.
“To take full advantage of cloud services in the coming year while defending from the ever-increasing threats means rethinking what your attack surface looks like and how Infrastructure as Code (IaC), containers, virtualisation platforms, credentials, microservices, and the underlying cloud platforms themselves are assessed, monitored and secured.”
“Not only are consumers now shopping online more than ever, but they’re now doing so from their mobile devices. This shift makes it crucial for businesses to ensure their website is mobile-friendly in terms of usability and speed, with Google continuing to scrutinise the mobile user experience.
“For those who prefer shopping in-store, they will still be researching online beforehand. Businesses, therefore must ensure they have a CRM or system in place to track offline conversions to allow for a more streamlined customer funnel which allows you to track important metrics such as shopping history, mobile payments and social interactions.
“2022 will also see the rise of payments via mobile wallets and apps. Convenient payment options such as Google Pay and Apple Pay will continue to increase as COVID-19 drives the need for touchless and cashless transactions. Businesses will need to adopt these new payment options in order to meet growing customer demand.”
“With The Great Resignation expected to peak in Australia in the coming months, technology will be instrumental to the hiring landscape. Businesses will need to hire quickly and efficiently without compromising on talent and skill. Humans are typically biased and can rely too heavily on a ‘gut feeling’ at the interview stage, which can result in both output and cultural problems later down the line.
“In 2022, companies will see first-hand how Al technology can reduce bias and create more equal opportunities for candidates who might otherwise lose out due to their age, gender, race or neurodiversity. The selection process should be backed by an assessment model where candidates are given a set of predetermined questions where their answers are graded based on their suitability for the job.
“Adding automation to the hiring process can save businesses an average of 14 hours per week in screening and scheduling, plus an additional 12 hours per week in other administrative tasks – this will be game-changing for businesses when resignations force mass hiring on teams with minimal capacity.”
“Communications technology is set to have a significant business impact in 2022 as brands look to identify new ways to enhance their customer experience offerings.
“However, short-term thinking has been king when it comes to communication design, with the pandemic necessitating a burst of creativity to address near-term challenges. Communication technology was able to address many of those pains, and as a result, the Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) industry saw rapid growth over the last two years.
“Unfortunately, this also meant that many brands have not been thinking very far into the future since the primary objective of adapting and reacting to the pandemic has created habitual near-term thinking.
“A study by McKinsey Global Institute backs this up, showing that most customer experience initiatives are lagging within organisations.
“The good news is that this year, we can expect to see the pendulum swing back to a long-lens outlook as brands begin exploring how to engage their entire organisation to deliver better, more meaningful communication experiences to customers.
“As a result, C-levels will become more involved with IT and developer teams to ensure communication is not an afterthought but instead led with a vision. For the firms that get this right, improved communication experiences will lead to more revenue, brand loyalty and category leadership.”
“The most successful businesses in 2022 will be those that prioritise their customer and employee experience using modern experience management technologies.
“Some of the biggest challenges facing companies right now are attracting and retaining talent while simultaneously addressing evolving customer needs against the backdrop of the continued impact of the pandemic.
“In these fast-moving environments, people are actively looking to do more with brands that put their needs first and meet them on their terms. And when organisations get it right, they are exponentially rewarded.
“Great customer and employee experiences start with a brand. They have embodied in the product the customer journey and delivered by happy employees who can provide superior experiences.
“Being able to deliver against what’s promised to customers and employees is critical, and that’s why we expect these types of programs to be firmly in the spotlight in 2022.
“As organisations rethink their customer and employee experience programs to keep pace with modern demands, experience management allows businesses to rapidly design and deliver services and experiences by using the feedback they collect at scale.
“The speed and precision enabled by experience management will prove to be a huge advantage for organisations in competitive and rapidly changing markets.”
“Consumerisation of B2B payments enables frictionless, real-time payments with the customer top of mind. The need for fast and reliable cross-border payments has become a priority for businesses looking to expand their customer pool and revenue opportunities around the globe.
“More businesses, especially SAAS players, are capitalising on Embedded Finance as they look for additional revenue streams through adjacencies to their current product set. For example, US-based capital as a service provider ClearCo has launched global banking services to its Australian customers via our platform APIs.
“The barrier to entry is being reduced from a technology, regulatory and global coverage perspective with global financial infrastructure companies taking on this burden allowing business to launch propositions in multiple regions simultaneously.”
“The last two years have seen a massive change in the technology landscape, largely driven by the pandemic and geopolitical pressures. At the same time, we’ve found some things have stayed the same, with ransomware continuing to be one of the most damaging forms of cybersecurity threats in the healthcare and manufacturing sectors, where the vulnerabilities of businesses were exploited.
“In 2022, we will continue to see the government take an active role in cybersecurity policy, threat detection and prevention measures. Government taking up cybersecurity as a priority with initiatives like passing the Critical Infrastructure Bill is an important initiative and just the beginning.
“As we move into this new year, we will continue to see an important collaborative role between both industry and government, with the dividend being an exciting digital future we can trust.”
“Technology has enabled organisations to adapt to the rapid changes of the past few years, and this year, four key trends will continue to play a critical role in business success.
“Connected platforms providing channel-agnostic services, which integrate content, commerce, service, support, and payments capabilities will allow businesses to respond to changing consumer behaviour.
“Data democratisation will enable non-technical business users to help make better business decisions through valuable, rich yet simple data insights and will be key in serving customers.
“AI and automation will aid the shift to more sustainable, scalable, and resilient operations. Intelligent automation will play a key role in improving supply chains and reducing the environmental impact of doing business.
Digital Identity, Security & blockchain technologies will serve an uptick in demand for Digital Identity frameworks to improve authentication and reduce fraud. As security risks become more sophisticated, multi-factor authentication will be a key player in mitigating cyber security threats.”
“The remote work experience needs to be completely reimagined – and a trend we could see in business is the emergence of virtual worlds being used as a more interactive remote workplace.
“Even though the concept of the ‘metaverse’ is 30 years old, it’s only just entered the mass consciousness, and it’s still a very new concept for workplaces. It’s just a digital ‘place’ parallel to the physical world – something that we’ve all gotten used to over the past two years.
“I see an opportunity for businesses to start to think about how they can use ‘world-building’ to re-engage their staff and create new value propositions for customers. For example, my team is doing this by reimagining the university campus as HEX World, a virtual space where students can meet peers from around the world.
“My hypothesis is that we’ll increasingly look to the gaming sector as inspiration and trend-setters. Game developers have already been doing world creation (like Roblox), coordinating remote team strategy (like multiplayer games), and implementing incentives (like loot boxes and power-ups) for years and have plenty of insight to pass on to businesses.”
“COVID-19 has radically shifted our world to become digital-first, with the tech sector experiencing significant impacts, particularly around the demand for skilled engineering talent.
“The Tech Council of Australia forecasts that we’ll need one million people in tech sector jobs by 2025, with 1 in 16 Australians employed as software engineers and developers. This now represents a major problem to tech companies, where the demand for engineers far outweighs the supply.
“Low code platforms are able to bridge the gap between senior high-in-demand engineering talent with the new wave of creators/engineers fresh out of university. This helps to accelerate engineers by democratising coding and removing boilerplate code that doesn’t need to keep being rebuilt over and over.
“Senior engineers can help to drive value for their teams, with platforms offering code-level control when you need it and no code when you don’t. Companies can broaden their talent pool now to hire more junior engineers to augment the skills shortage in specific coding disciplines they are looking to hire.”
“As we dive head-first into 2022, providing IT support to disparate teams across both virtual and physical environments means implementing and juggling an ever-growing list of solutions. If not properly managed, costs, complexity, and workloads can quickly spiral.
“To stay ahead of the curve, IT teams should conduct continuous reviews on their tech stack to weed out stagnant or outdated tools. These proactive and ongoing health checks help ensure no bottlenecks impact network performance or user productivity.
“By implementing a suite of robust network monitoring and service management solutions, designed to scale as your organisation evolves, teams can proactively identify anomalies or problems before they impact the business.
“Embracing these tools enables organisations to uncover the root cause of issues more effectively, devising workarounds and resolving disruptions more efficiently, while helping to improve documentation and communications.
“After the past year of whirlwind deployments and implementations, continually monitoring solutions and proactively seeking ways to improve can ensure SMEs and their IT teams achieve seamless, sustainable, and cost-efficient operations for 2022.”
“Over the last two years, cloud technology has become the backbone of many businesses. What was previously a ‘nice to have’ quickly became critical infrastructure.
“As we settle into 2022, I believe the march towards the cloud will only continue as businesses look for flexible and scalable solutions that can help them adapt to external market conditions and cope with juggling a remote and hybrid workforce.
“Equally, logistics and supply chain management will also be critical in 2022. With major supermarkets and retailers currently experiencing widespread shortages, it has become evident how unpredictable supply chains can be.
“Retailers, manufacturers and other businesses dealing with physical inventory are looking to robust Supply Chain Management tools to streamline their internal processes and are evaluating their supplier relationships to ensure they have wider access to products.
“For the year ahead, one thing is certain, the need to invest in reliable, adaptable solutions to ensure your business is ready to rise to whatever 2022 presents.”
“Cybersecurity has always had a big impact on business – something which is not set to change in 2022. Trend Micro’s latest global risk report revealed 25% of Australians believe cybersecurity is the biggest business risk today, and 62% claim it has the highest cost impact of any business risk.
“Today’s hybrid work environment – and the technology involved with this – is a trend to be
conscious of, especially from a security perspective. Businesses should adopt a comprehensive, identity-first security strategy to tie the complexities of protecting people and assets together in a seamless experience.
“On top of this, businesses should remember that both cyber security and cyber resilience are essential. As the lines between physical and digital disruption are blurred, there is a need to shift from a preventative mindset to a resiliency-based approach. While this requires investment from the business, security teams can effectively mitigate damages and risks.”
“Our reliance on hybrid models of working, initially adopted in response to the pandemic, has fundamentally shifted how businesses operate – and this isn’t going to change any time soon.
“As we enter 2022, technology will continue to play a significant role in the day-to-day lives of businesses in three key ways.
“Long-term adoption of the hybrid cloud: With 88% of Australian business leaders implementing new cloud capabilities due to the pandemic, many businesses are now ready to invest in longer-term strategic decisions about how they will utilise their hybrid cloud.
“AI/ML at the forefront of ransomware protection: As hackers introduce new threats that automatically go undetected, organisations must respond with AI-powered security tools that continually adapt and improve faster than humans can keep up with.
“Greater cybersecurity awareness: Businesses must invest in training to ensure their employees are aware of the importance of cybersecurity, reinforcing that they are part of the solution to protect company data and defend against ransomware attacks.”
“As COVID-19 follows us into the new year, the digital transformation that has accelerated over the last few years will continue to ring true for technology. Here are a few technology trends that I believe will hit businesses in 2022.
“Data is the backbone of digital transformation and will continue to evolve to benefit business processes. As businesses manage more extensive data sets, the chances of security breaches and losses will become more challenging in the new year.
“The pandemic has witnessed a boom for cybercriminals, phishers, hackers and scammers. In 2022, it’s expected that businesses will need to adopt cybersecurity technology tools and strategies to help respond to the cyber threat.
“As working from home has become the norm, businesses will need to embrace new technology systems that allow them to manage their operations. 2022 will see enterprises utilise more tools such as signature stacks and integrations to fill in details automatically.
“In 2022, artificial intelligence (AI) will continue to play a critical part in business operations. The importance of handling data, predicting profits, efficiency gains, and cost-effectiveness will see a rise in the number of AI businesses investing more resources into developing these systems.”
“As we settle into a new ‘normal’ living with COVID-19, we have all quickly transitioned to doing everything online and using a platform for just about everything. From ordering groceries and dinner, to exercise, booking holidays and managing properties, pretty much everything can now be done through a platform and tracked via a dashboard online.
“As the world becomes more connected and technology advances, we’re able to see more and more through our dashboards, automate more menial processes and ultimately manage our lives through a device in the palm of our hands. In 2022, the automation of processes will accelerate and will ultimately benefit all of us.”
“In 2022, eCommerce brands will come to view data as a value exchange. In return for first and zero-party data, brands will create exceptional experiences beyond their product offering through strategies like superior customer service, loyalty rewards, personalised recommendations, advanced access, and more.
“This year will see brands continue to grow their investment in mobile channels as a way to optimise shopping experiences for their mobile customers.
“Privacy changes are driving the push toward mobile conversation via SMS in particular, driving eCommerce brands to double down on more than their investment in loyalty — they’ll double down on building the emotional connections that are foundational to retention.”
“Integrations that allow businesses to leverage the value that exists in their business data will become highly valuable- and will likely drive tech innovation amongst niche software providers that best cater to specific industry needs (for example, Tradify for tradies or Re-Leased for property managers).
“These tools are often termed ‘vertical SaaS’. A recent report commissioned by Codat found that 73 per cent of Australian businesses say financial integrations make their business operations faster and more efficient.
“Sixty-three per cent of businesses surveyed globally believe that time spent on accounting admin takes them away from growing their business. It’s clear that the appetite of SMEs for integrated services is strong, and the adoption curve will further accelerate in 2022.”
“This year, the Australian Open Banking market will probably become one of the most advanced globally. The way we pay will be getting an upgrade, and for every fast-moving business, account-to-account payments are going to be a staple element of their financial infrastructure.
“PayTo and account-to-account payments will rival credit cards, giving players far greater security and control over money drawn from their accounts. Merchants will have a more reliable way to guarantee a payer’s identity and will be protected against fraud and failed payments. The features of PayTo will change the game for finance teams. For many, it could mean for the first time they’ll be able to match their payment strategy with business objectives.”
“Initially out of necessity, the hospitality industry saw the mass adoption of innovative technologies over the past two years, and these businesses are set to continue their digital transformation throughout 2022 and beyond.
“Due to a focus on improving the dining experience for both staff and customers, one of the biggest trends has been the growing popularity of contactless ordering and payment solutions.
“Contactless payments have proven a particular favourite by being easy to use and convenient due to digital wallets like Apple Pay. Recent payment integrations into digital ordering systems – including delivery and at-table QR code ordering, have cemented this digital payment dominance.
“With the number of digital payment users further predicted to rise from 3.8 million to 6.2 million by 2025, it’s clear that an integrated point of sale, ordering, and payment system that connects every consumer channel and offers capabilities well beyond the transaction will have an important impact on the future of businesses.”
“In 2022, the customer experience will continue to be a key differentiator that defines the success of a business, especially with the increase in demand for eCommerce.
“To strengthen online operations and improve CX, brands need to utilise technology that allows them to form deeper customer connections, helping them understand how consumers interact with their brand, the channels they prefer to communicate with, and where, if any, friction is occurring.
‘This year, businesses will also be required to improve their first-party data strategies if they aim to increase engagement, performance and return on marketing investment. With this data, brands can focus on personalised communications, which are proven to assist in generating sales and customer loyalty.
“Coupled with digital experience and behaviour analytics technology, such as Tealeaf by Acoustic, businesses can understand and optimise the customer purchase journey, enabling them to generate positive results.”
“Returns are going to continue to be a key battleground for retailers this year. Traditionally, retailers have treated all returns the same, no matter the value of the product or the value of the customer. However, customers are demanding a new approach as they turn away from outdated returns processes towards more convenient and personalised experiences.
“To meet evolving customer expectations, which the likes of Amazon have raised, retailers will need to utilise available technology that integrates returns with order and customer data. This enables retailers to provide their customers with a smart and personalised returns experience that will result in improved customer loyalty and purchase frequency.
“At Doddle, we’re working as part of Australia Post’s Collect & Return offering to enable merchants of all sizes to make returns easy and reap the rewards. We expect this technology to be widely harnessed by retailers and embraced by consumers in 2022.”
“Skills shortages, wage inflation and the arrival of ‘The Great Resignation’ in Australia are creating a perfect storm for organisations looking to retain and acquire top talent. If employers want to weather this storm, they need technology to better understand their workforce.
“Managing the employee experience requires an in-depth understanding of employee behaviours, actions and attitudes. Forward-thinking organisations are already harnessing artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to make sense of huge volumes of data throughout the employee lifecycle.
“In 2022, the organisations that adopt cutting edge technology to improve the employee experience are the ones that will see a marked difference in their business.”
“According to a report commissioned by Amazon Web Services (AWS), demand for cloud skills is expected to triple in the APAC region by 2025.
“However, without proper investment in talent pipelines, cloud projects that businesses will depend on in 2022 will either fail or be delayed. To fill the skills gap in this growing sector, education providers and employers need to work together to develop job-ready cloud engineers.
“This is why Generation Australia is collaborating with industry leaders such as Accenture and Microsoft to create new pathways from education to employment.
“Our 13-week online Cloud Practitioner program teaches participants the necessary entry-level technical skills of Microsoft Azure and also the critical behaviours and mindsets to fast-track graduates into life-changing roles that would be otherwise inaccessible.
“Small organisations and employers will also benefit from being able to access motivated and skilled entry-level Cloud talent so they can meet the growing demand of this technology trend.”
“2022 will be the year ERP systems evolve to modern Enterprise Application Platforms in Australia where businesses will increasingly seek composability across all cloud environments. Organisations will need a standard operating model and platform for consistent integration, workflow, data analysis, and extensibility.
“Users will want to build their processes and experiences to match their exact needs – based on AI and intelligence built into an EAP’s framework. The adoption of voice-enabled devices and digital assistants as critical business tools in remote-work environments will increase.
“Another expected trend is the convergence of analytics, intelligence, and user experience to enable successful, real-time decision-making. Delivering information just in time instead of traditional dashboard forms – with in-built predictive intelligence.
“Cloud innovation that allows customers to navigate a true hybrid cloud/on-premise business without impacting productivity will also be key this year, while business process definition, AI and intelligence will play an important role in an organisation’s purchasing decisions.”
“In 2022, one of the biggest impacts technology will have in business will be helping employees achieve work equality. With many businesses adopting hybrid working models, collaborative technology that allows remote employees to feel as though they are sitting beside their colleagues, clients, and business partners will be a core focus.
“The complexity that comes with managing today’s asynchronous and dynamic work environments will also see an increase in the adoption of AI and data analytics to support and improve employee productivity and safety and drive growth and operational efficiency.
“These data will have a more objective view on employee productivity both in the office and when they work remotely. Leveraging these insights can help businesses determine the most effective office layout to minimise wasted space and improve proper safe distancing measures and what technology investments will prompt better hybrid collaboration.
“Businesses will also want to take the complexity out of the meeting rooms, removing complicated systems that affect productivity and engagement. This will mean having the right technology that simply works every time. Simple, easy to use, high-quality technology which allows them to connect seamlessly with co-workers and clients with zero fuss.”
“It’s now a statement of the obvious, but we have all seen COVID accelerate demand for better digital tooling across all industries – and sport is not immune from these changes. A successful, prospering community sports ecosystem over the next twenty years will rely largely on intuitive, scalable technology that meets modern expectations drives increased engagement for participants.
“On the administrative side – the silent, hardworking staff who run community sport – we will continue to see the impact of fluid expectations. As these people become accustomed to more sophisticated technologies and automated processes at work, they’re less prepared to waste time on antiquated admin, clunky legacy systems, and vast paper archives spilling out of the clubhouse cupboard. As we move into 2022 and beyond, we’re going to see more turnkey technology platforms that will streamline sports management.
“Creating tournaments and scheduling matches will be quicker and easier, collecting fees and subscriptions will become streamlined with the adoption of cashless payments, and players, parents, friends and family will be able to keep track of games, stats and events with the click of an app.
“On solid foundations, technology will offer amazing opportunities for innovation in community sport. The organisations who embrace this opportunity and stay focused on high utility and intuitive customer experiences will thrive.”
“The impact of the metaverse is multi-dimensional and one of the most-watched tech trends in 2022.
“Over the past two years, we’ve seen businesses, education institutions, social gatherings, and more turn to online avenues. While that has changed the way we learn, work and interact, the prevalence of the metaverse will take it to the next level as a hybrid of physical and online interactions.
“This allows businesses to provide employees with flexibility, train staff innovatively, and encourage remote collaboration, which will then most likely help companies recruit and retain top talent.
“The VR/AR space will thrive as technology advances, especially due to the impact of travel restrictions, as it will help ameliorate the impediments of social distancing by bringing people together – albeit virtually.
“Facebook (now Meta) made a head start trying to commoditise 3D, virtually connected worlds with its VR device Oculus Quest – we expect other technology and lifestyle players to quickly follow suit.”
“As the workplace drifts away from a standalone building to now being a cloud of interchangeable, remote workplaces, 2022 is the year of the Digital HQ. A concept that champions connectivity throughout the workplace, the digital HQ enables employees to work from anywhere. The key to this is relying on a businesses’ technology stack. An essential component of a strong tech stack is content enablement.
“This technology connects content stored across a company’s tech stack providing instant access to the most up to date information for employees who need it, in whatever application they’re using. As a result, businesses will see scalable agility for accelerated productivity and, more importantly, simplification of processes no matter where employees are working from.”
“Graph data platforms soared in 2021. Adoption has increased across the board, from small businesses to large enterprises, due to the ease of implementation. This trend will not only continue in 2022 but will also generate new use cases across various sectors as more organisations look to make their strategies and operations more data-driven.
“This year, businesses will also need to consider implementing graph data science to combat fraud and other financial crimes. Knowledge graphs can help businesses identify complex patterns that indicate fraudulent behaviour, enabling them to act before impacts.
“In 2022, we will also see the rise of “citizen data scientists”. These are employees who work with predictive/prescriptive analytics models but whose primary job function lies outside the field of data science and analytics.
The data science field is one of the fastest-growing, and with the workforce currently experiencing “The Great Resignation”, companies will need to make data science more accessible to help fill gaps on their teams.”
“Decentralisation is fast becoming the new norm as companies realise their full potential and web3 capabilities. Blockchain projects will become more specialised in a specific business or operational tasks; however, this will create opportunities for cross-chain innovation.
“Our northern hemisphere neighbours will go through another cold winter resulting in more demoralising lockdowns and deeper loneliness. Teams, Zoom and Slack won’t cut it anymore; people will crave the human engagement only found in a real-life work environment. Employers will respond appropriately by investing in their workplaces, so they feel less like a prison and more like a community.
“EV supply chain issues and microchip shortages will continue to play havoc on global trade, especially in Australia for 2022. Australian’s will embrace EVs faster than anticipated but will be let down by the inadequacies of supply chain and EV infrastructure. In response to increased demand for vehicles, I expect EVs to appreciate from their 2021 prices.”
Read: Let’s Talk: 40 Top Business lessons from 2021
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Yajush is a journalist at Dynamic Business. He previously worked with Reuters as a business correspondent and holds a postgrad degree in print journalism.
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